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Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Re: Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Posted by Tiah041369 on Oct 9, 2020 11:13 am

Hi, I'm newly diagnosed with breast cancer in my left breast that has spread to lymph nodes, and my surgeon told me I had a spot on my back. I don't even know the type of breast cancer I have yet, or where the spot on my back is. I know he meant on bone though. The surgeon at the breast clinic told me this on Friday, last week and that the spot on my back needed to be dealt with before the breast cancer. He told me that we would see in the next 2-3 months if radiation works. This week went by with no call about starting radiation. I tried calling my family doctor multiple times this past week to only have his secretary tell me he would call me back, but he didn't. I was hoping he could call me back so that I could tell him about a tightening pain under my left ribs which has been moving from the front to the side and back, along with sharp pains on occasion. This started not long after I got the bad news so my family keeps telling me it's stress. Since this is a long weekend and I couldn't get my family doctor to call me, I decided to go to the clinic to find out what to do about this pain since Tylenol wasn't helping. Well, now that worried me more. The doctor there found a sore spot on my lower left rib in back and then just prescribed me Naproxen for the pain saying it's an inflammatory and also a different anxiety pill that I can take during the day. Then the pharmacist worried me as well. He called the doctor who prescribed me this and I overheard her say something about my liver. So now I'm thinking, did the cancer spread to my lower rib and/or liver now. The not knowing and waiting is frustrating. My family isn't helpful since they think what I have can be completely cured and they don't want to hear what I have to say. They keep telling me to stay positive, but I can't since I haven't read or heard of anyone advanced like me being cured. Sorry for my rant, I guess I'm really frustrated and just thinking this cancer will spread to other places before any treatment could start.

Re: Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Posted by ashcon on Oct 9, 2020 1:12 pm

Welcome - I'm glad you found this community, though I'm sure you wish you weren't here. 
You've been given a lot of not-so-good news that hasn't been supplemented with a clear and implemented action plan yet. Boy, I wish more doctors were aware of the impact of this waiting in a dark and silent cave had on us, especially just before the long weekend. 

I am not a doctor, nor do I know what has been said or done, or not said or not done, by whom. But at first read of your story, it sounds like it was probably the surgeon who needs to be followed up with about the referral for radiation to start. 
(As soon as I entered the care of my region's cancer centre, my family doctor was completely hands off, leaving all tests, treatments and referrals to the oncology team). 
Can you go back to that surgeon, if you haven't done so already? 
I'm assuming that you know it is in your bones because of scans or tests, yes? 

Also it is possible that the reference to your liver is only about the effect the Naproxen will have on your liver. Pain meds tend to affect the liver. So if they are thinking that you are going to start treatment(s) for cancer - which is also very hard on the liver - they're probably just worried about keeping the dosage of painkillers down so that you will be OK to start your cancer treatments (when they start). 

Hope that makes sense. 
Hope you are able to get hold of someone today. 
Hope that you have hope. 
Hope that you know you are not alone - we're here for you. 
---- "Nothing ever becomes real till it is experienced." ----

Re: Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Posted by SpeedyStill on Oct 9, 2020 2:36 pm

You have been given great information from Ashcon.
From what I read you need some answer from your Cancer Center.
There is always going to be tests and waiting periods but if we know what we are dealing with it is a lot easier to accept.
You are at the right place for some empathy and compassion.
Don't tell me you understand until you have walked in my shoes.
Love that saying.
Trapped feelings can be dangerous to our health.
When I share my feeling with a caring person or Community I always feel a little better.
love in your heart is love to share

Re: Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Posted by Tiah041369 on Oct 9, 2020 8:33 pm

Hi, thank you for the advice. The tests I've had so far is a mammogram, ultrasound, biopsies, CT Scan of chest and abdomen and a bone scan. The surgeon at the breast clinic gave me the news, and he's going to send it to Moncton. That's the closest place to where I live that does radiation. So, I'm waiting to get a call from Moncton. I probably won't see the surgeon at the breast clinic until the radiation for the spot on my back is done, since he told me that if radiation worked, dealing with the breast cancer would be next in 2-3 months. As for my family doctor, I was hoping he could prescribe me something better to control the pain under my left rib, and back until I can go to Moncton. Since he would not return my call this week, I went to the clinic instead. I'm just frustrated from the waiting for some sort of treatment to start. I felt no pain a few weeks ago when I passed all those tests, but I'm now feeling pain. I'm praying that this cancer isn't spreading like wild fire before I can start treatments. Thanks again for your words. It feels good to know that there is others out there that understand. My family doesn't want to hear what I have to say, they totally believe that I'll be completely cured.

Re: Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Posted by SpeedyStill on Oct 10, 2020 6:27 pm

Cancer is Cancer no matter what type or stage.
True understanding only comes from the experience.
Those who have not suffered do not understand suffering.
Prostate Cancer has always been plagued by this misunderstanding.
Cancer after you are told, every pain becomes suspicious.
I know because that's me.
All the Best 

Re: Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Posted by gwenny on Oct 11, 2020 10:15 am

My problem was that I didn't want to talk about it myself. Talking about it with my doctor was like a challenge for me every time, and a thousand times worse to talk about it with relatives or friends. Reading other people's stories helps to understand that your case is not unique, even though it's easy to understand it from the start.

Re: Let's Discuss...talking about cancer

Posted by Elsie13 on Oct 11, 2020 10:00 pm

3northernbears‍ , I was just looking at your ABOUT ME page.  So sorry to hear what your husband is going through, and what the two of you are going through. And I suppose fewer people are talking to you because they don't know what to say.  Maybe you would find the caregiver discussions helpful?   https://cancerconnection.ca/discussions/viewcategory/35
In 2016: diagnosed with stage 2 ovarian cancer. Treatment: hysterectomy, chemo, radiation. Afterwards: No Evidence of Disease!